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Biden Issues Fiery Rebuke Of President For Attacking His Son; Trump Orders Remaining U.S. Troops Out Of Northern Syria; Diplomat At Center Of Ukraine Scandal To Testify This Week; Black Woman In Texas Killed By White Officer In Her Own Home; "This Is Life" Airs Tonight, Looks At Female Marine Corps Combat Training. Aired 6-7p ET
Aired October 13, 2019 - 18:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN HOST: You are live in the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Alex Marquardt in for Ana Cabrera in New York.
Breaking news tonight, former Vice President Joe Biden angry and on the attack, issuing a fiery rebuke of President Trump for repeatedly targeting his son at rallies and on Twitter. Both the president and his lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, have accused Hunter Biden, the picture there, of improperly benefitting from his foreign business deals while Biden was vice president. There is no evidence of that and the former vice president is making clear he has had enough.
JOE BIDEN (D), FORMER U.S. VICE PRESIDENT, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Let's get something straight. First of all, no one, no one has indicated of any consequence that anything was done wrong or illegally by me or by my son. Every major national, international and local news operations that's looked into it has said it's a lie. This is the president flat lying, number one.
Number two, the statement my son put out today, which I saw when he put it out, I was told there was one being put out, I did not consult with him about what was being put out, in fact, represents the kind of man of integrity he is and what in fact he has done and why he stepped down. And I can tell you now if I am your president, next president, I'm going to build on the squeaky clean, transparent environment that we had in the Obama/Biden White House and no one in my family or associated with me will be involved in any foreign operation whatsoever, period, end of story.
Now, let's focus on the problem. The problem is we have a president who violated his oath. He's invited not just relating to me, on three occasions, he's gone to a foreign government and asked for their input in our domestic election, Russians, the Chinese and the Ukrainians.
And there's not a single shred of evidence to suggest anything I did was wrong. I enforced the policy of the United States government backed up by the IMF, backed up by the E.U. and backed by all our allies to clean up the corruption and fire a prosecutor who was corrupt, period. I never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever had a conversation with my son about anything that I was doing.
MARQUARDT: An adamant Joe Biden right right there.
I want to get straight to CNN's Jessica Dean who is in Iowa. Jessica, Biden in those comments there, pulling no punches, really. The news here though is that as a result of this firestorm, Hunter Biden, it was just announced, is stepping down from the board of a Chinese company that he was a part owner in and he was serving on that board.
JESSICA DEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, he served on the board, and this morning, he announced through his lawyer that he would be stepping down from that board role by this Chinese-backed company at the end of the month. Hunter Biden going on in that statement, again, through the lawyer, saying that he also, if his father is elected president, would not serve on my board or do any b work for any foreign countries.
Now, we also heard Vice President Biden in this room over just a few moments ago, you heard him a little bit in what you played there for everyone, saying, no one in my family will work with foreign businesses, no one in my family will serve in the White House, no one in my family will serve in cabinet-like positions. Obviously, a dig at President Trump and President Trump's children and their family, Alex, who have continued with their foreign business dealings and, of course, his children serving as advisers and also having their companies that do business with foreign governments as well.
MARQUARDT: And the other story, Jessica, of course, is this Turkish incursion into Syria.
And we heard the former vice president going after President Trump for his decision to pull troops out of Syria. What did he say?
DEAN: Yes. When he came out, that was the first thing he wanted to talk about. He called it an absolute disaster, this decision. Take a listen to exactly what he had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: What in God's name is this man doing? What is he doing to our security? What is he doing to NATO? What is he doing? It is a shame. It's shameful what he's done. In the best of my knowledge from all the sources I have who were in the Intelligence Community before and people who have worked with me, leaders in the foreign policy community, there was no consultation with the military. This is outrageous.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DEAN: And, Alex, I was with him in Los Angeles last week. He talked to the media there as well and he said at that moment, he said, I'm really concerned, I'm very, very worried about what President Trump is going to do with the remainder of his presidency as far as our international interests.
And this him talking about this today really framing it as this has an unhinged president who's putting our national security at risk. You can expect to hear more and more of that as we lead into Tuesday's debate. Alex?
MARQUARDT: All right. Jessica Dean there with the former vice president in Altoona, Iowa, thanks very much.
And joining me now to talk about all of this and more is a Democratic Congressman Adriano Espaillat of New York. He serves on the Foreign Affairs Committee.
Congressman, thanks so much for coming in. There's lots to get to, obviously. But I want to first get your impressions about what the former vice president just said.
REP. ADRIANO ESPAILLAT (D-NY): Well, it was -- I think we were waiting for this kind of response, because the president has continued to assault the Biden family, unjustifiably. There was no wrongdoing in what Hunter Biden did. I think he did the right thing by making that statement and putting that away, if you may.
But at the same time, the president's family is engaged in business while at the White House, getting patents from China and really making all kinds of deals across the planet. And one never knows what's going on when they make those deals.
MARQUARDT: But isn't there an argument to be made that if Hunter Biden is going to leave the board of this Chinese company, it remains to be seen whether he is going to give up his partial ownership of that company that there is at the very least an acknowledgment from the Biden campaign that there is a conflict of interest or the perception of a conflict of interest?
ESPAILLAT: I think he made a good decision. It was the right decision. I don't think that he's acknowledging there's any wrongdoing. I don't think anyone has really pinpointed to any wrongdoing by Hunter Biden. This is really a debunked story. This is the president trying to side track the main issue at hand, which is the problem with Ukraine.
MARQUARDT: Well, let's get to Ukraine. And Ukraine is a major factor, of course, in this impeachment inquiry. This is going to be a huge week on Capitol Hill on Thursday. We're going to see the former ambassador to the European Union, Gordon Sondland, testify in front of a panel of three committees, including yours, the Foreign Affairs Committee.
And The Washington Post is reporting that he is going to say that the text that he sent to the current top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine saying that there's no quid pro quo, was actually a message that he had gotten from the president in a phone conversation that the two men had. How significant is that news?
ESPAILLAT: I think it's significant, because, first and foremost, the president is leading his entire administration in this chorus of denial, Right? But, in fact, we see that there is a conversation between these two men. We want to know what was really -- what transpired in that conversation. One of them say, speak to me off the phone. We want to know what transpired there if, in fact, they did speak.
But the president is really orchestrating and giving talking points to many people involved in the investigation, if not, telling them not to go to Congress and testify. So this is really a problem. This is all obstruction. When you ask someone not to testify or you forbid them to testify or you give them talking points for that testimony, I think all of this is obstruction.
And the American people really want to get to the bottom of this. I think that we're doing a good job in Congress interviewing the witnesses. We'll have more witnesses this week. And at the end of the day, when we have all the evidence that we need to have on our hands, we'll make a report to the Judiciary Committee and they will, in turn, determine what kind of articles of impeachment will be drafted.
MARQUARDT: Another -- one of the major witnesses that I understand that you would like to speak with is Bill Taylor, currently (INAUDIBLE). He was the one who was quoted in text messages saying, do I understand that a White House meeting with the new president of Ukraine is tied to military aid? CNN has reported that that request has been made. Do you know when he's going to be testifying?
ESPAILLAT: We don't know yet when he's going to be testifying, but I think that's a critical part of the investigation to try to establish whether or not this was done to get a meeting in the White House or whether the president hanged over military aid on to Ukrainian in exchange for this bogus investigation. That's critical. And both Taylor and Sondland will bring important information, important facts and evidence to this whole process.
MARQUARDT: Yes. And the other person bringing that important information is also going to be Fiona Hill, who is the former adviser -- senior adviser on Russia.
But, Congressman, I want to switch gears to Syria now. Obviously, Turkey has gone into Syria. The Kurds have accused the U.S. of leaving them to be slaughtered. And now, we understand that the Kurds are striking a deal with the Syrian army to come in and help them fend off the Turks. Your reaction to this news? And because the impression that it looks like the U.S.'s enemies are filling the void as the U.S. Troops are pulled out.
ESPAILLAT: This is really tragic that a long-time ally of the United States, the Kurds, who held the line in that very troubled region of the world, is now going to Syria for help. It's almost like the kid in the neighborhood that's being picked on by the bully going to an opponent of ours and saying help us because the Americans have turned their backs on us. This is really bad. It's bad for foreign policy across the planet. It's bad for our relationships with our allies. And, of course, this could end up to be carnage in that part -- in that region of the world.
MARQUARDT: I mean, some people have even said the words, ethnic cleansing, when it comes to the Kurds.
I want to ask you about the possible resurgence of ISIS. There have been reports today that hundreds of people have broken out of a camp, not ISIS fighters themselves, but family members, people who are allied with ISIS. We have spoken a lot in the past few days about how vulnerable these detention facilities are that house more than 11,000 ISIS fighters guarded by Kurdish fighters who now have to go and fight against Turkey. What are your concerns there?
ESPAILLAT: Well, clearly, the Kurds played a pivotal role in that area in keeping some level of order and having their attention somewhere else now provides opportunities for ISIS fighters or their families, as it was reported today, that close to 800 family members fled this facility, creates a clear and present danger for that region. I think it will fuel and ignite even further the conflict in that particular region of the world.
MARQUARDT: All right. Congressman Espaillat, thank you for going around all those different subjects. I appreciate it.
ESPAILLAT: Thank you.
MARQUARDT: All right. As President Trump orders a near total withdrawal of those U.S. troops from Northern Syria, one U.S. official is saying that this is giving ISIS a new lease on life. We'll take you there next.
MARQUARDT: Breaking overseas today, almost all American military forces who have been deployed to Syria are being pulled out of the country. That's a major change from just a few days ago when President Trump announced that there would be a withdrawal from just Northeastern Syria of just a few dozen, around 50 Special Forces troops. And it is along that border where Turkey had long been planning military action against Kurdish fighters who are America's allies and fought and died alongside them in the fight against ISIS.
The U.S. Defense Secretary, Mark Esper, explained that decision earlier today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARK ESPER, DEFENSE SECRETARY: We have American forces likely caught between two opposed and advancing armies and it's a very untenable situation. So I spoke with the president last night after discussions with the rest of the national security team and he directed that we begin a deliberate withdrawal of forces from Northern Syria.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MARQUARDT: Already this weekend, Turkish forces have claimed to have seizes territory inside of Syria and armed groups who are aligned with Turkey. Turkish proxies have cut off a major highway into a city where U.S. troops are stationed right now. Here is more from CNN's Arwa Damon.
ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Alex, well, as you can imagine, when it comes to these types of wars, the situation inside Syria is becoming increasingly chaotic as this operation moves forward, with Turkey's president insisting that no matter what, it will go ahead.
And also it's not entirely clear who is in control, if anyone. Turkey and its Syrian Arab allies, this military force, it has cobbled together with remnants of various rebel factions, are pressing forward. But in a number of areas, there are still some pretty fierce gun battles, to include the area of Ras al-Ain, the Syrian border town that is actually just behind me here.
We have been throughout the day hearing sporadic gun battles breaking out, as well as numerous explosions. There's a lot of concern for the safety of the civilian population on the other side.
But despite their best efforts, the Syrian Kurds have not yet been able to find an ally that is willing to protect them and prevent Turkey pushing forward in this operation, an operation that many are now saying may actually go even further than any of them had anticipated.
Turkey and its Arab Syrian fighting force have managed to capture a key area of what's known as the M4 highway, a strategic highway that cuts east to west. And what this has not only cut off key Kurdish towns from one another, but also potentially poses a risk to the U.S. military given where their bases are located.
In all of this, who is actually the big winner? Well, an expert that I was talking to says it's Russia. They are not only the playmaker here, he said, but also the kingmaker. Russia now is able to exert influence over Damascus, over Ankara and to a certain degree, also over the Kurds. And they have managed to get rid of the U.S. military presence inside Syria without having to even fire a single shot, Alex.
MARQUARDT: All right. Arwa Damon there in the Turkey-Syria border, thank you very much.
President Trump's decision to remove those U.S. troops out of the conflict zone in Northern Syria drew immediate shock and really condemnation from officials and lawmakers who say that it amounts to leaving a key and loyal U.S. ally completely alone against a long-time and hostile adversary. But it also flew in the face of what President Trump has said in the past. While he was campaigning for president, President Trump, then Candidate Trump, was relentlessly critical of President Obama's decision to scale down troops in the Middle East. In fact, he directly blamed that decision for the rise of ISIS. And Candidate Trump used that as one of his main attack lines against his rival, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: ISIS formed in this vacuum created by Barack Obama and Secretary Clinton. And believe me, you were the ones that took out the troops. Not only that, you named the day. They couldn't believe it.
I mean, her and Obama, whether you like it or not, the way they got out of Iraq, the vacuum they've left, that's why ISIS formed in the first place. They started from that little area and now they're in 32 different nations, Hillary. Congratulations. Great job.
She gave us ISIS because her and Obama created this huge vacuum. And a small group came out of that huge vacuum.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MARQUARDT: A huge vacuum. Let's get into all this with Juliette Kayyem. She's our National Security Analyst and a former Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security.
Juliette, that vacuum is also what the Secretary of Defense, Mark Esper, was talking about when he said that the U.S. is wedged between two armies. I believe he meant the Kurds in the south, the Turks in the north. And that vacuum has been created because the U.S. is not pulling out.
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: That's exactly right. I mean, everything is tragic, nothing is surprising. You could have predicted this when that first tweet went out a weekend ago. And let's not forget the Syrians are going to be moving up as well.
So our military needed to get out. It is a -- it's just sort of -- I don't know how to explain it. Like we put ourselves in this position at this stage and the vacuum, to quote President or Candidate Trump, not only is a vacuum for Turkey, for Syria, for Iran and for Russia, it is now a vacuum for ISIS, which is the piece that was so obvious that the ISIS detainees, the prisoners, their families, would not be able to be detained and would scatter to wherever they can scatter to for the time being, and therefore increase the level of threats not just that area but Western Europe and then maybe ultimately the United States.
MARQUARDT: Yes. And the president was asked about that and he almost dismissively said that they would escape to Europe.
The Turks have said -- KAYYEM: I'm sure that's -- let's just put a pause here. That's not very helpful to Europe because these attacks have taken a lot of European lives.
And one thing to just remember about terrorist organizations is that they recruit and they radicalize when they're winning. And so the most disastrous ISIS attacks in Europe, either motivated or planned by ISIS and the United States, have been when ISIS has had a strong geographic foothold.
As we took away that foothold, based on the last couple years until the last week, those attacks have been minimal. I don't want to denigrate them but they have not been -- there have been fewer of them and they have not been as successful.
Potential recruits want to join a winning team, and that's a narrative ISIS hasn't had for a couple years. They now have it again.
MARQUARDT: The U.S. have said that officials have told my colleagues and me that there is a plan in place without getting many details to take custody of high value prisoners. We've also heard the Turks saying, essentially, seeming to say, don't worry, we've got this. When we go into Syria, we will take responsibility of these more than 11,000 detainees. How likely is that?
KAYYEM: It's over. I mean, in other words, what we already know from the reporting, from our reporting and other reporting is a certain amount of them are already out, okay? And we don't know their level of potential violence, but we also don't know where they're going to go.
Of the high value detainees, at least some early reporting, suggests that our military has moved out faster than they can keep control of those high value detainees. High value detainees are ISIS organizers, bomb makers and those who can plan attacks. So these are not just random ISIS captives. We had a good sense of who was where in terms of of the ISIS captivity.
You then have their family members. Now, these tend to be women and children. So maybe understandable, maybe they're less of a threat. Nonetheless, we've just sort of unleashed a sort of terrorist threat that we had contained for the time being, right? And so that is therefore going to increase the threat not only to our homeland but obviously to our NATO allies in the west.
MARQUARDT: Yes. And, thankfully, so far, there has not been a prison break, per se, But officials will tell you that it is really just a matter of time. Juliette Kayyem, we could talk about this all night but we've got to leave it there. Thank you very much, good to see you.
Now, as the controversy over the president's dealings with Ukraine consumed Washington, one of the diplomats at the center of this all will testify on Capitol Hill this week. A big question, could his testimony endanger the president? We'll be discussing that next.
But, first, here is Alison Kosik with this week's Before the Bell.
ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Alex. Investors are preparing for a flood of corporate earnings and they may not be pretty. Stocks have held up reasonably well this year despite the trade war and its slowing global economy. But weak corporate results could give investors a reason to pull back.
Overall, earnings for S&P 500 companies are expected to decline for a third straight quarter. That hasn't happened since 2015. The U.S./China trade war is a big reason for the weakness. Companies that generate more than half their sales overseas are expected to suffer an 11 percent profit decline from last year.
What companies say about business conditions going forward will be key. Downbeat outlooks could trigger fears of an earnings recession. That's a prolonged downturn in corporate profits. And that's the last thing a market already on edge needs.
In New York, I'm Alison Kosik
MARQUARDT: This week, one of the U.S. diplomats who is at the center of the Ukraine scandal will be testifying under oath in Congress as part of the impeachment inquiry into President Trump. Gordon Sondland is the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, and he will be sworn in on Thursday. The State Department had previously blocked his testimony, but he is now responding to a subpoena.
Now, while you might not know his name, the chances are high, good, that you've read his text messages concerning possible quid pro quo with Ukraine. In one of them, a fellow ambassador, Bill Taylor, he writes to Sondland, quote, are we now saying that security assistance and White House meeting are conditioned on investigations? Sondland then replies, call me.
In another, the same ambassador, Bill Taylor, texts, as I said on the phone, I think it's crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign. Five -- note, five hours later, Sondland finally responds, in part, Bill, I believe you are incorrect about President Trump's intentions. The President has been crystal clear, no quid pro quos of any kind.
To dive into all of this, we have CNN crime and justice reporter Shimon Prokupecz and former House Republican investigative committee counsel Sophia Nelson. Thank you both for joining me tonight. And I should note that Sophia is the author of the book, "E Pluribus ONE: Reclaiming Our Founders' Vision for a United America."
Sophia, I'll get to you in a second. I want to start with Shimon.
Shimon, that second text message there that we were just talking about in which Sondland says there was no quid pro quo, we're now learning that didn't really come from him.
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: It didn't and -- right, so you just mentioned that five-hour gap in those text messages. But who was he on the phone with? We've learned that it was the President, Donald Trump.
And during that five-hour -- within that -- during that phone call, he said, according to "The Washington Post," to say that it was the President, President Trump, who told him that there was no quid pro quo and that he just simply went ahead and this is what he said to this career ambassador, Bill Taylor, who was raising all sorts of issues about what was going on here, very concerned that there was a quid pro quo.
More concerning to Bill Taylor, when you read these text messages, was that this was all being done to help the President with a political campaign. And that was what Bill Taylor raised.
PROKUPECZ: And so, Mr. Sondland came back and said, I -- you know, he didn't tell him that he spoke to the President, but essentially, there's that five-hour gap. He talks to the President, and then he responds in a text message, which raised all sorts of eyebrows because of the way it was written. It seemed very -- almost legal, in some ways. And the fact that it took him five hours to respond was certainly suspicious.
MARQUARDT: Right. Sophia, when we hear this reporting from "The Washington Post," which is attributed to someone who is close to Sondland -- and presumably this is a leak -- and if this holds true and that Sondland is going to say that that was the message coming from President Trump, does it sound to you like Sondland is starting to look out for himself? Do you think that the White House should be worried about his testimony on Thursday?
SOPHIA NELSON, FORMER GOP COUNSEL FOR THE HOUSE GOVERNMENT REFORM AND OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE: I think the White House should be worried about a lot of things in relation to what President Trump has been saying, doing, writing, and coaching others to do.
Look, Taylor, you can tell from the text, was very concerned. And it's funny that he came back on a text after they got off the phone and then recaps in a text what it is that they talked about. I think that's what we call a CYA text, right? He's covering himself. And I agree with you that Sondland, at this instance, is now realizing, the President will throw me under the bus, Giuliani is in trouble.
There are a lot of people that are in a lot of difficulty based on this Ukraine transcript, the texts, the calls. And I think that Sondland is just going to tell Congress what happened. And then, look, I want to say this to the Democrats in the House right now, you need to get rid of process and get on with purpose.
And what I mean by that is you're taking too long to get these articles of impeachment out. The President has impeached himself on his conduct, on the way he talks at his rallies, on what he's done with these transcripts, foreign heads of government, the emoluments clause. I could go on and on. They need to get on with it.
MARQUARDT: Yes, I think you're absolutely right. And we heard Shimon just say that Bill Taylor is a career and longtime diplomat. He knew exactly what he was doing. He put that in writing right there.
NELSON: Right there.
MARQUARDT: I want to talk to you both about Rudy Giuliani. "New York Times" reporting on Friday that the President's personal lawyer, Giuliani, is under federal investigation for his involvement in this Ukraine scandal. President Trump, for his part, doesn't seem very concerned by that. He is defending Giuliani. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: He's a great gentleman. He was a great mayor, one of the greatest -- maybe the greatest mayor in the history of New York. He was a fantastic prosecutor.
I know nothing about him being under investigation. Somebody said -- I heard a report today. I don't -- I can't imagine it. He is a man that looks for corruption. And whatever he does, I really believe he's a totally -- I mean, I know he's an honorable man.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MARQUARDT: The President calling Giuliani an honorable man. Shimon, you have seen this saga play out before all of this in the Russia Mueller probe.
MARQUARDT: Are you surprised that, so far, the President is sticking by Giuliani?
PROKUPECZ: No, I'm not surprised. We saw this with Michael Cohen. Despite the repeated reports and all the evidence that suggests that Michael Cohen was involved in the hush money payments, that the President was involved in the hush money payments, he continuously lied about that. I think we're seeing sort of that going on now with Rudy Giuliani.
I think, behind the scenes, a lot of people would like to see Giuliani go away, and that may be the case now. What's going on here in New York, in the Southern District of New York, with the rest of these two associates of Rudy Giuliani, it's very serious. And the FBI and the Southern District here, they're digging in.
And really, they want to know what Rudy Giuliani's entire involvement with these two individuals is, and what they're looking at is the money. You know, we've reported also that they're scrutinizing the money. They want to know who was paying him, who was paying the Russians, how was the money going back and forth.
One thing I want to point out, that in the indictment, it mentions that a Russian national -- they don't identify this person but Foreign National Number One is a Russian person. That should sort of raise all sorts of alarm bells for folks, the fact that the Russians may be behind some of what was going on here. That would not be so surprising to many of the people who have been following this.
MARQUARDT: Sophia, I want to ask you about something that Shimon just said about people wanting Giuliani to go away. The Republicans on Capitol Hill, so far, have not come out against the President for his dealings in Ukraine. In fact, they've defended him saying that he was just trying to root out corruption. But do you think that those people, his closest allies who, so far, have stayed silent, would like Giuliani to go away?
NELSON: Here's what I know. Politicians focus on two things, money and votes, and then they love to be reelected. The polls, right now, are moving against the President. Fox News had a poll that said 51 percent of Americans now polled by Fox want the President not just impeached but removed. And if you look at all the polls we saw last week, those numbers are going against him.
The Republicans aren't going to be able to play this game much longer. At some point, they're going to have to make a decision, do they stick with this President? Do they tolerate Giuliani and everything else that's going on that's messy?
It's disgraceful. We won't even get into what's happening in Turkey and Syria right now. And at the end of the day, I believe that the Republicans are going to have to come down on the side that, well, I'd like to be reelected again and so I'm going to abandon this President.
And Rudy Giuliani has been a nightmare for the President on every show he's been on, including on this network when he was on with Chris. That interview still just -- I'm still in shock over that interview he gave. It just -- he is not someone that is helpful to the President's case at all.
MARQUARDT: All right. Well, it's going to be a busy week in Congress in this impeachment inquiry.
Sophia Nelson, Shimon Prokupecz, thank you so much for joining me.
NELSON: Thank you.
MARQUARDT: Now, another person in Texas has been shot and killed by police in their own home. The details on what happened, that's next.
MARQUARDT: Put your hands up, show me your hands. Those were the last words that an African-American woman heard, split seconds, before a White police officer shot and killed her inside of her own house in Fort Worth, Texas.
We're now learning that the woman's 8-year-old nephew was also in the room when the shooting happened, and they had been playing video games. We understand that it all started when a concerned neighbor called the police after noticing that the woman's front door was open.
CNN's Polo Sandoval is following the story for us. It's a horrible and tragic story, Polo, but what have you learned about how this happened?
POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Tragic, horrible, Alex. And the demand for answers is certainly growing there in Fort Worth, Texas right now, especially after the actions of this police officer that happened early Saturday morning.
There was some heavily edited body camera video that was released by the Forth Worth Police Department almost immediately after the shooting to CNN here. And you can actually see the moments leading up to the fatal shooting of Atatiana Jefferson, one of the 28-year-old's neighbors -- actually the one who called the police after that door was wide, and you can see it in this video here.
You can also see the police officer peering through the door and then walk the perimeter of the property when, suddenly, police saying, that an officer spotted somebody standing near a window in the home. And that is when the officer fired a single fatal shot. The medical examiner there in Texas identifying the woman who was shot by the officer as Jefferson. She died at the scene.
In addition to the body camera video, Alex, police also released a still shot of what appears to be a weapon that was located inside the house. Why is that important? Police not necessarily saying at this point.
They did, however, have a press event only about a few minutes ago here where they said that they can say with complete confidence that the police officer involved here did not announce his presence as a law enforcement officer but instead then opened fire before that very short, split-second command to put her hands up.
CNN has requested the full, unedited body camera video. And at this point, authorities are only saying that they've released everything they're going to release at this point. But they do share the deep concerns that many people have out there right now. And they also are saying that the officer drew his weapon, opened fire after a, quote, perceived threat. That officer is off the job right now as this investigation continues.
MARQUARDT: All right. Well, so many questions left and, of course, a family that wants and deserves answers. Polo Sandoval, thanks very much.
SANDOVAL: Thanks, Alex.
MARQUARDT: And we will be right back.
MARQUARDT: Tonight, Lisa Ling is back with an all-new episode of "THIS IS LIFE." Now, this week, Lisa gets a rare look inside the Marine Corps' initiative to integrate women into combat training where they learn to fight and kill alongside their male counterparts. Here's a preview.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go down there next to your weapons.
LISA LING, CNN HOST (voice-over): When you think back on the little girl from El Salvador, how do you think she would feel if she could see you today?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think she would be pretty surprised.
Being here, protecting my country, giving freedom and not having that where I was from, it's something old me probably would be really proud about.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right, let's go!
LING (voice-over): In this pressure cooker situation, men and women work the gun as a unit.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Three, two, one.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's a male-dominated society, but we all wear the same color. We're all green. We all do the exact same job.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MARQUARDT: And Lisa Ling joins us now. Lisa, great to see you.
LING: Thanks, Alex.
MARQUARDT: I want to go back to 2013. That was the year that the U.S. military was ordered to open combat roles to women, but the Marine Corps specifically fought against that. They filed, I understand, an exemption that was ultimately denied. Why was the Marine Corps so resistant to putting women in combat roles?
LING: Why were they resistant? I mean, I think that the Marines have done things a certain way for generations, and I think it was just a difficult thing for them to comprehend, the idea of women filling those roles. But women have been in the Marines since -- and have been Marines since the Marines began in the 1700s, and they have also always engaged in Marine combat training. They just did it separately from men. The Marines are the only branch of the military that obligate every
Marine to do combat -- military combat -- sorry, Marine combat training. Whether you are in the band or in administration or on the front lines, you have you to do it. For decades and decades, men and women have done it separately up until the last couple of years.
And so, we embedded with a company called Hotel Company in Camp Pendleton. Camp Pendleton is the last base to begin gender integration. And we profiled a number of women who are training alongside their male counterparts. And you'll see how it went tonight on "THIS IS LIFE."
MARQUARDT: And, Lisa, how did the male Marines -- given that this has been so controversial in the past, how did those male Marines who you spoke with feel about the women being integrated into the Marine Corps? Was there some wariness, or were they quite encouraging and welcoming?
LING: Well, the young men we spoke to were welcoming of it because they were seeing how hard their female counterparts were working. And the idea behind integrating so early on is, you know, they -- there were women instructors as well as male instructors for Marine combat training. And the idea is if they begin the process early on, they might avoid conflicts in the future.
MARQUARDT: Well, this looks really interesting. Thank you, Lisa Ling, for joining us from Los Angeles.
There is a new episode of "THIS IS LIFE" with Lisa Ling that airs tonight at 10:00 p.m. Eastern Time, as well as Pacific. We'll be right back.
MARQUARDT: American gymnast Simone Biles has solidified her place as the greatest gymnast of all time. That happened today. She won the gold in five out of six events at the world championships in Germany this weekend, including the women's all around. That gives her 25 -- count them -- 25 career medals overall at the Worlds. The 22-year-old vows that she is preparing for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, which she says, sadly, will be her last.
Former Vice President Joe Biden, he is hitting back at President Trump over criticism of his son Hunter's role in Ukraine. And the former Vice President is making a promise about any role that his family could play if he is elected. That's next.